Kelton, Elmer

Author: Elmer Kelton
Publisher: Texas Christian University Press
ISBN: 978-0875653716
Copyright: September 5, 2008
Pages: 374

In the 1870s, buffalo hunters moved onto the High Plains of Texas. The Plains Indians watched hunters slaughter the animals that gave them shelter and clothing, food and weapons. The battles at and near the ruins of a trading fort, Adobe Walls, became symbolic of the struggles between hunters and the Comanche.

In this aptly titled novel, Texas novelist Elmer Kelton shows his uncanny ability to present both sides of a clash between cultures. With a firm grasp of Comanche life, Kelton presents The People as very human and very threatened. Equally clear is the picture of Anglos found on the high plains in those days—Jeff Layne, a Confederate veteran and now a fugitive; Nigel Smithwick, an English “second son” and gambler, Arletta, the lone woman among these men (one woman was at Adobe Walls).


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The title of this absorbing new novel by the author of Honor at Daybreak refers to the extermination of the buffalo, which once roamed the American prairies in herds so vast that they covered miles of territory like carpets. The creature's days are numbered as the book opens, with the Civil War ended and the country again focused on Manifest Destiny. Thrown from a train in Kansas by irate victims of his prowess with cards, English gambler Nigel Smithwick is saved from death in the desert by former Confederate soldier Jeff Layne. The pair team up as buffalo hunters, and inevitably they clash with the Comanche Indians, whose traditional way of life is threatened by white hunters's mass killing. Kelton deftly handles both sides of the conflict, displaying a more-than-passing knowledge of Native American culture and eloquently capturing the post-Civil War tension between erstwhile northerners and southerners now making new lives in the West. Well written and fast-paced, this powerful, moving novel proceeds inexorably toward the extinction of the great herds and of the indigenous peoples' way of life. It will attract readers who enjoyed the epic sweep of such grand western sagas as Larry McMurtry's Lonesome Dove and Harry Combs's Brules.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Author: Elmer Kelton
Publisher: Domain
ISBN: 978-0553565478
Copyright: February 1, 1994
Pages: 224